With exactly one year to go until the opening of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach today officially invited the world’s Olympic athletes to take part in the Olympic Games.
At the celebrations, President Bach symbolically handed invitations to the Presidents of the National Olympic Committees (NOCs) of Greece, China, France, the United States of America, Senegal, Australia and Japan, as well as the Chef de Mission of the IOC Refugee Olympic Team. Among the NOCs represented were the country where the Olympic Games originated and several host countries of upcoming Games and Youth Olympic Games editions.
Speaking at the ceremony, President Bach said: “One year from now, Japan will make history. It will be a wonderful and unique moment for our gracious Japanese hosts to show the world the best of Japan: your rich history and traditions, your cutting-edge innovation, your culture of hospitality, and, of course, your love for sport.”
He continued: “Preparations are making excellent progress, thanks to the amazing work of the Organising Committee and with outstanding cooperation and support from the government and the business community. There is so much to look forward to. I have never seen an Olympic city as prepared as Tokyo with one year to go before the Olympic Games.”
Excitement in Japan is already growing, as seen by the huge demand for tickets, with more than 3.2 million already sold, and more than 200,000 people having applied to be volunteers.
The ceremony took place at the Tokyo International Forum, which will host weightlifting at the Olympic Games next year. It was attended by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, IOC President Thomas Bach, IOC Coordination Commission Chair John Coates, Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, and the President of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, Yoshiro Mori.